If you and your spouse have children and are pursuing a divorce, the future of your kids will be a top concern for both of you and the court will want to know how you plan to care for them after your divorce finalizes.
If the two of you have agreed to create your parenting plan under the guidance of a mediator, open communication will be key to your success.
About parenting plans
The parenting plan you create will provide details as to how you and your spouse will raise and care for your children post-divorce. The plan is a legal document that will require the approval of the court in order to become effective. If any changes or updates need to made to the parenting plan over time, both parents will need to work together to agree on those changes.
Details to include in your plan
Every parenting plan is unique, but here are some basic points they should cover:
- Weekly parenting schedules and how you will manage the transition between homes
- Holiday and vacation plans
- Access to school and medical information
- Communication standards between both parents, and between the parents and their children
- Decision-making rights, such as for medical care
- Details concerning child-rearing expenses and who will cover them
Common mistakes to avoid
To ensure there are no misunderstandings, avoid using vague language in the parenting plan. Do not forget to include important details, like which parent has decision-making rights regarding medical care for the children. Also make sure to include rules about travelling, such as requiring permission from both parents when taking the children out of state or vacationing abroad.
The best interests of the children comes first
As parents, you should discuss all important considerations as you work together to develop your parenting plan. A mediator can help you negotiate each point using open communication and fair standards to ensure you arrive at a workable parenting plan that reflects the best interests of your children.